NEVER going back to the Churches of Christ

sent in by John

My story begins when I was three years old, my mother, who just left my father, rededicates herself to God through her connection to her church, The Church of Christ, and dedicates her children as a gift to God... This comes as some friends from this church help her to kick an amphetamine habit.

When I was nine, one Sunday morning in 1973, my mother explains to me that I must obey God today, that I was a "footstool of the Lord" and that I had no choice but to be baptized today... At church, she pushed me down the aisle, but I told the minister my mother made me do this and asked him to talk to her... He lectured her about when a child was ready for baptism... My mother soon placed membership in another Church of Christ in the area and asked the minister and elders to talk with me.

This started in earnest in 1975, when I was 12... Gospel Meeting, a visiting minister wanted to meet all the eligible "young people"... When he was told by an acquaintance that I haven't obeyed my God, he declared loudly "we'll make a Christian of him before the week is out"... I endured five nights of being singled out by name, reading bible verses out loud with him, and standing through seven stanza invitation hymns while that itinerant minister, the church's minister, and numerous others stare and beck at me to walk down the aisle... I stood firm... after the end of night five, that guest minister confronted me coming out the auditorium, and I let him have it... I told him if HE was an example of how a Christian acted, I never want to be one... I also told the minister I wasn't coming back. However, my mother threatened physical discipline and hell, and the church's minister apologized for the incidents... so I went back... Things got quieter, until we got a new church minister...

My mother harangued me to be baptized at least once or twice a day... The minister did it most every Sunday, my class instructor, was at it at least every other Sunday and I sat through it because I wanted to keep peace in my family... My two younger brothers did it at age 10, one to not ruffle feathers, the other to shut them all up... I had issues with that other brother, I felt he was either caving in or maybe playing games with them... Anyway when it happened, my mother, the minister, and a few acquaintances publicly challenged me to follow suit at that service... I told them no.

The last straw came in 1978, when I turned 16... They added a new tack... In a Wednesday night class, I was asked about my new girlfriend, the questions quickly turned provocative... What was her affiliation??? Why don't you bring her to your church??? When it got to "What's wrong with OUR girls???" I opened fire... I told them what was wrong with each girl, girl by girl... I then told them what was wrong with bringing my girl to that church and with the church itself... The teacher left for five minutes, returned and we were marched into the auditorium.

The minister gave a blistering sermon about unproductive members and how they were cut off "from the vine", followed by another seven stanza invitation hymn... I knew where I stood... I told the minister that that was one of the most interesting and revealing sermons I ever heard him give, walked out the door and never came back... My mother came back at me about it and I threatened legal emancipation action (I found out later, I might have had a good chance of getting it)...I told her I was NEVER going back to the Churches of Christ for any reason and if she kept assaulting me emotionally and physically about it, I would take legal action.

The following year, I was on my own, and never felt so free.

More soon.

J.

Little Rock
Arkansas
US
Joined at: Good question... Might have been in my twenties, might have been never, depends on who and which Christian sect you ask
Left at 34
Was: Church of Christ, Episcopal, Neo-Pagan
Now: I try to avoid that these days
Converted because: fear
De-converted because: freedom

33 comments:

south2003 said...

I would love to hear more....come back a and post.

Interested Atheist said...

I love that story! I wish I could read more stories about people standing up for themselves like that. Good for you!
I'll be looking forward to hearing more too.

Ted Betz said...

J,

Your are right - THOSE PEOPLE ARE NOT CHRISTIANS! It is very sad that you had to endure all of their pressures! I am 61 and have only been a strong Christian for about 4 years. I used to wonder about the so called Christians who gathered at a church in our little town - every Wed, Thurs, Sundays! I said to my self - why don't they go and help someone in stead of just getting together all the time. The thing that changed my life was our daughter praying for my wife and me for over 15 years. Then our son sent us to a hoyistic clinic in AZ. which was the catalus that allowed God to change my life. I am now about 4 times happier and now know for sure where I will spend eternity! I will pray for you that your life will end up like mine! May God Bless you J!

Ted Betz
God Changed My Life Ministries

e-mail address --> godchangedme2@Aol.com

Mommy said...

I am desperately sorry you went through that. It breaks my heart because God would never berate anyone to join a Church. I pray God will speak to you in His TRUE way, and bring you into fold of True Christians.

south2003 said...

scoobie doo said: "I pray God will speak to you in His TRUE way, and bring you into fold of True Christians."

What and who is a True Christian (tm).

Ahh dam, they never learn.

Jules said...

Hey J, good for you!! Admire your courage and welcome to life without the yoke of theistic religion.

To Ted Betz, am glad that you found "God" and are happy now. Perhaps you like to be reminded here that all of us Xtians in here do not need and want your prayers, thank you very much. And we are not in the least interested to know where we will be in eternity. It is a question that is not necessary or useful. And we do NOT want our lives to end up like yours. We will live our lives the best we know how without having to cling to any super being.

And to Scoobie's Mom, you are welcome in here but to remind you -we all in here does not believe in a God or any God that speaks. Even if that God does speak, it is indeed a very confused one. One thst speaks the Jew way, and sometimes the Muslim way and sometimes the Christian way and nobody can say for sure which is his actual language. I have no need for such a confused God.

Forever and ever said...

Ted Betz
Another true christian ge that makes three today.I bet you all go to the same church.I bet you where all baptized the same way.

Christians have had faith the size of a mustard seed for 2000 years.

Well done you've managed to move a mountain of money in the wrong direction.

Remember this body of christ.A house divided will not stand.Your days are numbered.Your jesus is dieing.Hip Hip Horay Glory glory

The spirit of the turd is upon me.
never before have so many done so little for so long for so much.

I can't wait till you fools get raptured.Just think about all those flash cars, houses,big bank accounts and church realestate.

Just imagine we could sell the church assets and solve world poverty.

Why didn't jesus think of that.
because www.jesusneverexisted.com

You are lucky I am not cursing you.
Like that cursed bloke who got hung on a tree.

Jezebel_in_a_Red_Teddy said...

I WAS "RAISED" IN THE CHURCH OF CHRIST
C.O.C. pronounced "cock"

I was raised in the COC. And I went to a COC private school and COC summer camp and a COC college (parents paid, hey, it was free and smoking and drinking off campus was more fun, also sex before marriage was a BIG no-no so screwin' was more fun). At the age of twelve there was great pressure to be baptized because puberty was setting in and unclean thoughts were as well so we youngin's were finally accountable. Since I had already lost my "faith" at the age of eleven I had no interest in being baptized. But all the others my age were being baptized and it was sooooo special but I couldn't quite get it, it didn't make sense to me. But to make a long storyshort, I feel your pain John, I can relate!

Forever and ever said...

Is fowl language .The sign of a person who has a limited vocabulary.Well thats my excuse.and I can prove it,So whats yours anonymous.
Remember who you are.Not what you have been.

Anonymous said...

Hi there J,
It's really devastating when people who claim to be of God go and traumatise people!
I'm hearing of church after church that has the strangest beliefs.
For those who would like to have a refreshing look at Jesus I think the webstite www.wayofthemaster.com
is an awesome site to check out.
Deb, NZ

Anonymous said...

Wow, you dealth with some sick people who were at those churches. I was raised in that church, and there was pressure. One associate minister asked my best friend "when are you going to be baptized so your dad can be an elder?" as his 3 sibs had been baptized.

What you went through was really bad. Assuming your Mom stayed clean, one of the problems is that some people get as addicted and mixed up with the purpose of religion / church in early recovery. Those at the church should have kept the boundaries.

Tonight is the first time I have seen this site, and it is very interesting.

Still sorting it out

ted Betz said...

Hi again,

I was thinking about what "JULES" said and it is kind of funny as I used to think the exact same thing. I can even remember where I was when I was thinking - those radical Christians - like my daughter - are just weak and need something to hang on to. Now me - ah - I am not like that - I can figure things out for myself! I remember thinking this as I was driving down Walbascin (sp?) Road on the north side of Battle Creek.

Jules, is there any way I could get you to listen to some "stories / messages on the web. One of them is aabout the life story of Addoff Coors the 4th - ownere of Coors Brewery. I just found out today that most of the message that I have been passing out on CD's at a local truck stop are now on the web. Jimmy Evans from Mississippi had them put on there. He is the one that send all the CD's to me to make copies of to put at the truck stop. If you or others would like to hear them I CAN ASSURE YOU - YOU WOULD ENJOY THEM. The web address is

bestcddownloads.com

Anyaeden said...

I read what you wrote about being persecuted by people who claim to be the Church of Christ. Unfortunately that was a bad example for anyone. The greatest command that we are given, is to love one another as we love ourselves. I am very sorry that you were treated is such a horrendous way. Please rest assured that not all members of the Church of Christ are as unloving as that. I agree that everyone is allowed to make their own decisions concerning what they believe, but just know that my heart grieves for your pain. Please don't judge all of us by one group of fanatics. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Ghandi once said "I would be a christian, if it weren't for christians." Sometimes I feel ashamed for that name. So many people use it against the kingdom, and corrupt it's purpose. We're called to love and to nurture. When someone claims to be a christian, they are saying, I have given up on myself, and have given all to God. Relationship is the key importance in any chrisians walk. That's where he loves to dwell. Honestly, the people at that church, never had that relationship or else they would of acted differently. They let tradition and routine confuse the BIG picture.

boomSLANG said...

Anony: Ghandi once said "I would be a christian, if it weren't for christians." Sometimes I feel ashamed for that name.

Anony, Ghandi, or "Mahatma Gandhi" was a proponent of the Hindu philosophy. He sought to bring peace; to abolish racism and predjudice. While Gandhi might've believed that at the center of every religion was love and truth (note: every religion), he was clearly against dogma, hypocracy, and violence. Hello? The Christian doctrine..i.e..the "Holy Bible", unequivocately promotes violence, prejudice, and racism....i.e..the antithesis of unconditional "love". So frankly, if Ghandi ever did consider, and then ultimately reject Christianity, it was likely because of the aforementioned reasons.

Anony: So many people use it against the kingdom, and corrupt it's purpose. We're called to love and to nurture.

Most everybody, whether they know it, or not, can "love" and "nurture" without being "called" to do so. The so-called "Golden Rule" is something that people who are part of any civilized society can learn on their own. Compared to ancient man, we are much more socially evolved, thus, we don't need to learn the obvious from any Holy book.

Anony: When someone claims to be a christian, they are saying, I have given up on myself, and have given all to God. Relationship is the key importance in any[Christian's] walk. That's where he loves to dwell.

There is no "he"; there is only "I", so any "relationship" is imagined, and ultimately a relationship with one's self, anyway. Thine own self is the Kingdom.

Anony: Honestly, the people at that church, never had that relationship or else they would of acted differently. They let tradition and routine confuse the BIG picture.

The "BIG picture" is that religion, mainly the three leading monotheistic religions, cause division and promote elitism. We simply don't need this kind of superstitious legendary thinking in the 21st century.

Just a Dad said...

Wow!! Some of those that have posted should take the time to read the "whole" Bible! Some of those that have posted should take a deep breath and not be so "angry" at the world. As the Bible (inspired word of God) states, we are all sinners because God created us with free will. We have the will to believe or to not believe, our choice. I am sorry that J grew up in a church that was not loving and kind and understanding like Jesus asks all christians to be. But as I stated earlier, we are all sinners. If we would read the entire Bible with an open mind, a mind that is not weighed down by prejudice and inherited baggage, we would see and understand the entire story. Then we would, all of us, would come to the understanding of why Jesus said and did the things he did. Especially why he died for us, even though we were sinners! We would understand why he said to have Faith, Hope and Love ....... and why he said that the greatest of these is Love. Because when we see God our Faith will be real, our Hope will no longer be needed and only Love will remain, because God is Love! Oh for us all to be those that strive to live like Jesus and Love one another fully, deeply and without prejudices. I love each of you that have posted to this sight. With deepest Sincerity! A christian, trying every day!

boomSLANG said...

Just a dad: Wow!! Some of those that have posted should take the time to read the "whole" Bible!

Read the bible? 'Dad, I gotta tell ya, that is HORRIBLE advice if the goal is to convince people to see "Yahweh" and his son "Jesus" as a reality. This may come as a big shock to you, but for many of us, it was precisely when we actually read the bible that led us to the conclusion that Christianity is bunk. Talking snakes, donkeys, and vegetation? Men camping out in a whale's belly? Swimming hammers? Mass murder..including children and animals? I suggest YOU crack open the bible and reread it, this time, not skipping one single verse. Obviously, your parents and/or preacher cherry-picked and spoon-fed you the verses they saw fit, to acheive their agenda(s).

Just a dad: Some of those [who] have posted should take a deep breath and not be so "angry" at the world.

No one's "angry" at the "world", "God", or any other make-believe character. However, we are a little concerned that grown men and women living in the 21st century center their lives around legendary superstition.

Just a dad: As the Bible (inspired word of God) states, we are all sinners because God created us with free will.

Woah, pops....where is your evidence that the bible was "inspired" by any "God"? Surely you're not going to tell me that you know this because the bible SAYS SO, right? If self-verifying documents point to "Truth", then Dianetics, the Book of Mormon, and the Holy Qur'an are all books of "Truth", too. Listening.

Just a dad: We have the will to believe or to not believe, our choice.

Right, and we don't believe. Moreover, just because one has "freewill" doesn't mean that either of any given choices have a referent in reality. You, 'Dad, have the freewill to accept or reject Santa Claus. If you reject "Him", that doesn't mean Santa Claus exists, does it? No.

Just a dad: If we would read the entire Bible with an open mind, a mind that is not weighed down by prejudice and inherited baggage, we would see and understand the entire story.

Paint me red and call me the Devil, but I would argue that it is YOU who is biased; that Christians see the bible as truth, because they want to see it as truth.(special shout-out to Buddy Ferris!) The problem is that they have to suspend logical thinking in order to do so, just like you are doing now. They have to compartmentalize; they are logical in most other aspects of what reality is, and what it is not, but they reserve an itsty-bitsy part of their brains to accept "Christianity", as illogical as it is.

Speaking of....

Especially why he died for us, even though we were sinners!

For sake of argument--if Jesus died for sinners(us), then our sins should be paid in full. Yet, there seems to be an outstanding debt. Furthermore, if he died and then was resurrected(became a zombie), then where exactly is the "sacrifice"??? Where is this zombie right this second?

Just a dad: We would understand why he said to have Faith, Hope and Love ....... and why he said that the greatest of these is Love.

I know this concept might seem foreign to you, but one can have "hope" and "love" without "faith", or being superstitious.

Just a dad: Because when we see God our Faith will be real, our Hope will no longer be needed and only Love will remain, because God is Love!

Yes, "God is Love", unless that "love" isn't reciprocated, then "God" becomes a vindictive pyromaniac with a chip on his shoulder. Nice.

Just a dad: Oh for us all to be those that strive to live like Jesus and Love one another fully, deeply and without prejudices.

Again, I can't think of a worse role model than "Jesus", either living, or fictional. Enjoy your delusion, though.

Poltergoost (Defender of all Non-Believers) said...

TED BETZ WROTE:

"The thing that changed my life was our daughter praying for my wife and me for over 15 years."

The thing that changed your life, was "YOURSELF". "YOU" are the one who decided to change, so therefore you changed on your own by making the decision to change.

However, your change wasn't for the better unfortunately.

TED BETZ SAID:

"I was thinking about what "JULES" said and it is kind of funny as I used to think the exact same thing. I can even remember where I was when I was thinking - those radical Christians - like my daughter - are just weak and need something to hang on to. Now me - ah - I am not like that - I can figure things out for myself!"

We've got something in common old Teddy boy. I also at one time thought the same exact way that you now currently think.

God knew what was best for me, and I didn't.

Then I tested my own ability again, and started getting results.

FYI, Serving God was a complete waste of time.

I am not ashamed and afraid to say that Jesus is an asshole, and christianity sucks.

Austin 3:16 said...

I just Whipped Jesus' Ass!

It's true, and it doesn't matter what you believe, because "STONE COLD" Said so!

That makes it a fact!

Now bring me some damn beer!

FirstJohn4:19 said...

" 'Meaningless! Meaningless!'
says the Teacher.
'Utterly meaningless!
Everything is meaningless.'
What does man gain from all his labor under the sun?
A generation goes and a generation comes,
But the earth remains forever."
(Ecclesiastes 1:2-4 NIV, NASB)

FirstJohn4:19 said...

www.amazingfacts.org

stronger now said...

www.talkorigins.org

"What does man gain from all his labor under the sun?"

Better living conditions. A sandwich perhaps. Sense of self worth. Knowledge. Experience. A sexy tan. Money. Health insurance.

I could go on.

AtheistToothFairy said...

FirstJohn4:19 said...
"www.amazingfacts.org"
----
Yes indeed 'John', this is an amazing website.

They offer plenty of "amazing" ways to empty one's wallet of money into a delusion.
Money, that was made in the earthly world of reality, but for some reason this super god still requires this human invented currency for his gory purposes, errrr, I mean glory purposes.

Hurry folks and pluck down $490 for your very own "Tree of Life Literature Rack Set".

I swear, I'm in the wrong business if I ever wish to get rich.
All one needs to do, is to discard any compassion for your fellow human being and come up with some clever religious trickery to pickpocket money from someone's food budget.

To make this 'pickpocket' process easier, one only needs to read one of their goals.

"Our goal is to be the shortest distance between a contribution and a genuine conversion"

There you have it folks. It's never been easier to toss your money into the proverbial god-blackhole of religion.
Now don't everyone line up at once to participate in ridding yourself of those evil devil dollars.


ATF (Who is trying to decide if it's Casino's or Churches, that are the best at tricking one out of their money?)

FirstJohn4:19 said...

by the way, you (John) made a good point about "fear" being the motivation, if I understood correctly...

AtheistToothFairy said...

FirstJohn4:19 wrote:
by the way, you (John) made a good point about "fear" being the motivation
---
Hey Last John,

I suppose that you would say there is nothing to fear about your god, because he loves us, right?
I do see the way's god has loved the human race, from the writings of your bible book.

Rest assured, he protects us the way a mugger protects his victim; in that deserted dark alley.

He takes care of us, like hungry sharks take care of bait fish.

The light of your god is as healthy for the human race, as the noon day summer sun is for an Albino.

We are as safe with your god, as a mouse is with a rattlesnake.

Your god guides human lives, in the same way as a blind man would pilot an airplane.

Your god's promises are as trustworthy, as trusting a two year old child not to touch the Halloween candy left in his bedroom unintentionally.

God loves us the way Hitler loved the Jews.....The hell of god's ovens, comes in many forms.

Now if we believed in your bible god, then we sure would have something to fear alright.
Luckily, we gave up your god superstition; just as we learned to give up the fear of breaking a mirror and walking on sidewalk cracks.


ATF (Who see's no reason to fear any mythical gods of human creation)

FirstJohn4:19 said...

"For this commandment which I command you is not too mysterious for you, nor is it far off. It is not in heaven, that you should say, 'Who will ascend into heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it? Nor is it beyond the sea, that you should say, 'Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?'

But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it." Deuteronomy 30:11-14 NKJV

"For God
so
loved
the world,
that He
gave
His
only begotten
Son,
that whoever believes in Him whould not perish but have everlasting life.
For God did not send His son
into the world
to condemn the world,
but that the world through Him
might be saved." John 3:16,17

"And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, 'The lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the the children and the children's children to the third and the fourth generation.'" Exodus 34:6,7 NKJV

The guilty are those who don't want to accept the clearing away of sins (and are also referred to as "Those who hate Me" in Exodus 20:5), who's worldviews tend to pervade throughout the family (which is how it is in any family, but every individual has the choice). Their rejection of God brings consequences because it is basically just saying that they will trust in the finite things rather than the infinite things that don't seem to erode or pass away.
If you read the account of how the Israelites kept on trusting in their own way of doing things, it shows how God kept on trying to give them second chances, constantly calling on them, encouraging them, blessing them, offering to take care of them if they would only just accept the Salvation. The consequences of their own behavior didn't even make them think that just maybe there was a better way than trusting in themselves.

" 'Come now, and let us reason together,' says the Lord,..." Isaiah 1:18 NKJV

"Put Me in remembrance;
Let us contend together;
State your case, that you may
be acquitted." (Isaiah 43:26)

(If you look these up, to understand them better, you might want to read before and after them, even until the next chapter to get the context.)

I only write this because I used to be able to criticize Christianity along with everyone else, until I saw the truth, and since that is what I sought-the truth, I took a gigantic scary wonderful step, and dedicated my life to it. And so, instead of trying to tell everyone how wrong we've all been (I do not know the heart's of men), I would just like to say we are all bumbling along trying to find meaning to this purposeless life, why it is that some nights we are scared to go to sleep, wondering if we'll wake up the next morning, why there is sometimes an incredible feeling of loss or emptiness when we look at the world around us, and everything is dark and uncertain.

Yet, we aren't the only one's who felt that way:

"My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?
Why are You so far from helping
Me,
And from the words of My
groaning?
O My God, I cry in the daytime,
but You do not hear;
and in the night season, and am not silent." Psalm 22:1,2

Where is the hope for a meaning? Check it out yourself and read the rest of it =) It might mean more than me just telling you when you could figure it out for yourselves.

(I don't know if any would read the book of Ecclesiastes, but it was written by a disillusioned wise man who had fallen away from God and then somehow reached a startling conclusion)

"The Law of the Lord is
perfect
converting the soul,
The testimonies of the Lord are sure
making wise the simple." Psalm 19:7 NKJV

AtheistToothFairy said...

To Marc (aka FirstJohn4:19)

Shut your pie-hole Marc!!

We had enough of your bible vomit posts here.

Go post this crap on some xtian site, where it MIGHT be welcome.

It's obvious that this is you Marc, as you can't debate "your way out of a paper bag", but instead just paste your idiot bible quotes here as your best defense....as if it would affect a single soul on this EX-xtian site

Now go away, and stay away!!


ATF (Who is still waiting for proof of this bible god from any xtian; but will never see it)

Astreja said...

John 3:16 is a pile of steaming crap.

I contend that acceptance of that particular verse is the true "mark of the beast", in the sense that it reduces humanity to survival-obsessed creatures grovelling around in the mud and blood of Golgotha.

I, for one, choose to reject human sacrifice as the evil that it is.

Dave8 said...

I'll take the role of logic police on this one; by placing "1 John 4:19" into more context with the chapter it was pulled from.

1 John 4:19 - "We love him, because he first loved us."

Okay, let's go to the next verse.

1 John 4:20 - "If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar:"

So, if a man loves God like, yet suggests they "hate" their own brother, then they are "liars" - and this verse applies to "everyone", even the most venerated Christian "disciples".

Luke 14:26 - "If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."

Well, don't want to make this complicated... Let's just point out, that the author of "Luke" suggests that the True Disciples of Jesus Christ/God, are haters.

While, the author of First John suggests the author "Luke", and Luke's "hater" disciples, are "liars".

Are the Christian disciples "haters", or "liars"?

Which "biblical author" is "lying", Luke or First John?

.:webmaster:. said...

Some Christian troll posted a bunch of Bible verses authored by diffent people in different times that were eventually taken and bound into a single book.

Now, who were the authors of these various writings and why should anyone consider these various pieces that were quoted as anything other than anonymous religious rantings of ancient ignorants?

Hmm?

And, if any piece of these writings should be considered "THE WORD OF GOD" then should all the words in these various writings also be considered "THE WORD OF GOD," or do we simply pick and choose from among these writings the parts that support a particular viewpoint?

In other words, is threats of dashing children's heads against stones "THE WORD OF GOD" or is only the more pleasant parts we should be paying attention to?

And, if the ugly stuff is to be ignored, and the pleasant stuff to be listened to, who is that can decide which parts are "THE WORD OF GOD" and which parts are not?

Just a question.

sunshine_m said...

I chanced upon this website because I googled the name Ted Betz. I can tell by the dialogue that this isn't the Ted Betz I was looking for :-), but I found it extremely interesting to read everyone's comments. What struck me, is that in reading the back and forth dialogue, I noticed a distinct difference in the tone of the non-Christian vs. the Christian writers. There is a genuine undertone of peace and love and sympathy/empathy coming from the Christian writers and a general undertone of anger, sarcasm, disdain and negativity coming from the majority (not all) of the atheist/non-Christian responders. I know that not all non-Christians are like this - probably the majority are not (including my non-Christian friends) - but if you take a non-biased look at this dialogue, it's really revealing to see the contrast of the two sides. I am a follower of Jesus. Sometimes it is incredibly hard (hence the itsy bitsy part of the brain that sometimes has doubts), but I have chosen, by faith, or more so by God's grace, to believe in Jesus. One of the main things Jesus taught is to love and not to judge others. Unfortunately, many churches in the U.S. and perhaps around the world have completely missed the mark on that and have somehow become judgmental, or at least made non-Christians feel like they are being judged. For this and to any of you who have experienced this first hand, I am truly sorry. That's one of the reasons why I can imagine there would be so much anger and negativity in the tone of the non-Christian writers in this dialogue. Some, if not many Christians need to do a better job of being loving and non-judgemental and truly following what Jesus taught. But please know above all, that Jesus came to speak to the world about love and freedom and living life in a new way, in a way that gives you peace beyond what imagination. If I may quote the bible (because I know some of the writers here are iffy on whether or not they want to use it as a resource), I really like this verse from John 3:17, "For God did not send his Son (Jesus) into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." It demonstrates, among many other versus in the bible, (i.e. "If any of you without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her." A story that talks about a prostitute in the town and everyone mocking her, and Jesus loving her and accepting her and helping her to turn her life around) that Jesus' message was/is about love and acceptance. Anyway, I'm up way too late, but just wanted to try and toss a little love around. Everyone here seems so worked up. Peace to all!

AtheistToothFairy said...

sunshine_m said...
But please know above all, that Jesus came to speak to the world about love and freedom andliving life in a new way, in a way that gives you peace beyond what imagination
----
Oh goody, yet another 'true xtian' comes to enlighten us heathens.

Hey Sunshine M, perhaps you and the other true xtians (like Ray Braun, OTC etc.) can form a committee and rewrite the bible so everyone will have the same exact holy god message?

As far as the ex-xtians sounding 'angry' goes.
You're darn tooting we are angry. Angry that we were lied to about your imaginary god being, and thus wasted a good portion of our lives chasing after this fictitious creature.

Now if you have any evidence for your god (and you would be the first btw), then please provide it, otherwise, let me show you to the exit door.


ATF (Who wonders why all these hit&run xtians, are all unaware of what a paragraph is?)

Astreja said...

Dear Sunshine_m... To echo My colleague ATF, darn tootin' we're angry! What you interpret as "empathy" sounds an awful lot like "condescension" to our ears. We're sick and tired of being treated like uneducated children on our own website. Fed up with people who think that they have the truth and that we are just being stubborn.

But I'll make a deal with you: If you can stop your fellow Christians from barging in here every five minutes to warn us about Hell, I'll refrain from swearing at 'em. Okay?

I do find it unfortunate that Christians think they have a monopoly on love, peace and brotherhood. Quite frankly, I'm not convinced that Jesus was a real person. I am reasonably sure that, if he did exist, he neither walked on water nor came back from the dead.

And, in My opinion, not one of the alleged miracles was actually necessary. Nor are gods necessary. Why, oh why did a simple and perfectly acceptable message of "Let's take care of one another" get muddled up with supernatural silliness and such unhuman horrors as Original Sin and substitutionary atonement?

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